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Thread: heat source for browning? what do you guys use?

  1. #1
    Boolit Master

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    heat source for browning? what do you guys use?

    Hi guys,

    how do you heat your metal parts? (barrel)

    For small parts I use a heat gun, but past the butt plate in size and a heat gun just isn't cutting it. Ever use a propane torch?

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master

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    I have used a propane torch. An oven is best if it will fit. A torch takes awhile but works. Just gotta keep working the torch up and down the barrel until it gets hot enough. Repeat until you get the effect you want.
    Aim small, miss small!

  3. #3
    Boolit Bub
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    Used the oven when I built my T/C Hawken back in the day, worked great.
    Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

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    My oven is not 42 inches wide

    I'll use the torch, thanks guys

  5. #5
    Boolit Master



    curator's Avatar
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    When browning rifle barrels, I hang them vertically with a wire through the breech plug after de-greasing and heat them with a propane torch. Once I get them "sizzle-hot" they are ready to start browning. Wear clean cotton gloves when handling to avoid a spotty finish. You do have to work the torch flame up and down to get a uniform temperature. If your soldered-on barrel tenons or sights fall off, you got it too hot!

  6. #6
    Boolit Mold
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    I do what curator does.

  7. #7
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    I went to slow rust browning, and no longer worry about it.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
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  8. #8
    Boolit Grand Master
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    how do you heat your metal parts? (barrel)
    With a propane torch that has a spreader tip. Heat metal till hot to touch with a finger. Then FLOW the browning solution onto the metal. Additional coats increases the darkness of the browning
    Regards
    John

  9. #9
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    I use a clay back propane stove. The steel hearth will heat a barrel evenly.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

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    i prefer barrels and furniture in-the-white, to patina on their own, as was done back in the day. problem solved.
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  11. #11
    Boolit Master Toymaker's Avatar
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    I'm with Waksupi. Built a box frame, covered it in heavy mil clear plastic, put in a 15 watt light bulb for warmth. I'd card and coat in the morning before going to work and in the evening after dinner. Took a week but I found I got much better results and it's a more forgiving method. When I retired I tried carding more frequently but it didn't improve the finish any.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfd View Post
    i prefer barrels and furniture in-the-white, to patina on their own, as was done back in the day. problem solved.
    On the fowler I just completed, I did a faux damascus finish, and just let the color go to a French grey, but still showing the pattern. There is a pilgrim in the club who couldn't believe I wasn't going to brown it. When I told him many original guns were left in the white to naturally age, I got "the look"!
    My Christian Springs transitional rifle, I put on a light French grey, and over the years it is gaining an excellent brown patina that would be impossible to achieve with any other method aside from honest use.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  13. #13
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by waksupi View Post
    I went to slow rust browning, and no longer worry about it.
    I do the same thing and if I want a blued finish I just boil the parts in water.
    If God didn't want man to eat animals, he wouldn't have made them out of MEAT!

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  14. #14
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    Two torches. Heats faster and more evenly. Apply the Browning with forceps holding cotton balls dunked in the solution.
    Watch Your Top Knot!

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    I scald the barrel by pouring Boiling Water over it after each rusting and scratching.Never fails to impart a good colour.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Usually a propane torch if using a product like Plum Browing solution

  17. #17
    Boolit Master

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    I have only done one and I just used a propane torch and it came out ok.

    I am sure it is not the quality that true browning would provide.

    I have read of those in the old days taking their new in the white barrels and urinating on them daily until the desired "finish" level was obtained.
    Reckon I'll just stick with the Plum Brown solution.
    Nothing is impossible for the person that does not have to do it.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    I use my small toaster oven ($3.00 at a garage sale!) for the small parts. For barrels, take out the breech plug if you can, suspend the barrel vertically and use the propane torch flame applied into to the lower end of the barrel. It will heat up very quickly and evenly using that chimney effect.
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BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
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